Thursday, July 26, 2007

NPR Sunday Puzzle (July 22): Sly as a Fox

NPR Sunday Puzzle (July 22): Sly as a Fox:
Q: Think of an adjective that would describe a fox. Remove all the letters in the even positions — second, fourth, sixth, etc. The remaining letters, in order, will answer this clue: Fox's natural rival... what is it?
This puzzle was initially posted on the NPR website saying "A fox's natural rival". The new wording seems to imply that this involves the Fox network, Fox News, Fox Sports, 20th Century Fox, etc. I first thought that it might be CRAFTY --> CAT, but that doesn't make sense. Then I thought the answer might be CUNNING --> CNN, but that only works if you take out an additional N. Anyone else have the answer?

Edit: Okay, I'm going with JJ's submitted answer (see comments). Listening to the puzzle, Will definitely left out the article 'a'. Given that the posted puzzle changed from 'A fox's...' to 'Fox's...' I have to assume that this implies that it isn't the animal. I think the answer is CNN, but I just didn't have the right adjective. And yes, CANINE can be used as an adjective too.


  1. I think you're right with the CRAFTY-->CAT answer. I already submitted an answer of CANINE-->CNN that I got from the same logic you were using at first, but I didn't feel good about it so I searched the web for the right answer. Shortz usually gives more of a verbal hint when the question is intentionally misleading so I think he really was looking for a rival to the animal fox, and I think a cat works well, as they are both urban (or at least suburban) predators and thus rivals.

  2. there is a story of the cat and the fox so I think the first answer of cat and crafty is correct

  3. We will find out this weekend. I still stick by my final answer (or JJ's answer) of CANINE --> CNN because otherwise there would be no reason to update the website to say "Fox's" rather than "A fox's"

  4. I thought canine described a dog and vulpine a fox?


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